Equus caballus caballus

A portrait of a Shetland pony from the side at Hellabrunn Zoo. IUCN Red List endangerment category:
  • Family
    Horses (Equidae)
  • Weight
    150 – 200 kg

The strongest horse in the world

They may not look it, but Shetland ponies are the strongest horses in the world for their size. Despite weighing only between 150 – 200 kg, they can carry loads of up to 100 kg and even pull burdens up to 400 kg.

The picture shows a Shetland pony. In front of the Shetland pony is a Shetland pony foal.

Rugged homeland

The robust animals are well adapted to the rugged, barren landscape of the Shetland Islands in the North Atlantic. For the past 2,000 years, they have served the islanders as a riding, pack and draught animal. In mainland Britain, Shetland ponies were historically used as pit ponies to haul coal through the dark, narrow tunnels of the mines.

Shetland ponies are popular with children due to their diminutive size and gentle nature, which makes them ideal for learning to ride.


Distribution map shetland-Pony